The Van

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Sliding door window fitting.

Bought the window for the sliding door this week.It came from Magnum motorhomes.Arrived next day and I got 5% discount with my SBMCC membership . I used the same process as the sliding window on the opposite side. The template was already made and the cutting of the hole went very smoothly.After making the wooden inner frame and offering it up, the upper and lower part of the frame needed notching out. This is because there is a bracing strut that sticks out and a 900 x 500 window is the biggest size that you can fit to this vans sliding door recess. I decided to use my router to notch out the batten, but after plugging in, it didn't work . So had to use my cordless trim saw.the frame was then glued into position and the window screwed in a couple of hours later.I'm really pleased with the end result. It's top hung as the Hob is going to be next to it, so the window cab be open in the wet. This keeps rain out and also let's cooking smells out simples .

Ply floor removal and cleaning.+ new battens and insulation.

Needed to remove the old ply floor on Friday afternoon, it was in a bad state so I won't be re-using it, but it has one use left. As a template! The ply was screwed down and I managed to remove most of them, but there's always the odd one, where the head chews up . After removing all the ply there was a bucket full of mud to clear up. After a quick Hoover up, it just needed a wash.
Then I was able to get on with fixing new battens and insulation.the battens are 30 x 50 and stuck down with Sika.The insulation used is celotex 450 x 1200 batts which are 35mm thick.Ive used these as I have a whole pack left over from a job.The insulation is stuck down with pv foam.Then 12mm WPB ply is used for the new floor.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Back to insulating the walls, using 50 mm Kingspan .Need to finish this in the evenings as window for sliding door and new floor , need to go in next weekend

Shower room window and more insulation .

It was dry and sunny yesterday so I decided to fit the shower room window.This is a 500 x 300 opener.This went quite smoothly until I came to stick the inner wooden frame.Had some different adhesive as used up my stock of sika 512.The other glue had minimal grab and took ages to go off! I shall be using the rest of the tube on the floor battens.

Back to insulating after that. Bought two camping mats and stuck them in the curved area above the cab. Lots of cutting and spray glue on my hands! But end result is good.It's interesting that any bare metal areas on the roof were dripping wet,and the areas with celotex were dry.Good insulation = no condensation.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Remis roof window.

Decided to fit the large Remis tilt and slide roof window, it needed a 600 x 600 cut out. Overall its bigger and needs room at the front for the whole unit to slide forward.It was too big to fit in the indented area behind the cab seats,so I ended up fitting it further back. This entailed cutting through one of the roof struts.the roof was quite floppy! But once I had stuck the wooden frame up and fitted the window the strength was restored.As this was a big opening it needed more of the roof corrugations filling in.This was very time consuming and fitting this window took me all day Saturday.

Friday, 25 November 2011

More cleaning!

As it's depressingly dark when I get home from work, progress this week has been limited to washing the side Walls and roof. As my van was used for carrying grass cutting tools, the inside was full of dust and bits of grass.. I havn't taken any pictures of this.This weekend I plan to fit the two remaining roof windows.
Ribbon mastic was stuck round the underside edge of the heki and it was then lowered into place. Then the inner half was screwed up to it, pulling into the roof. The blind / fly screen panel will be fitted once the ceiling board has been fitted.

Roof window

Next I decided to fit a mini heki roof window at the rear of the van, above the bed.this has a 400 x 400 cut out size.I made a template out of 3mm ply, and after lining up in the centre of the roof and between the internal rafters , drew round the template. Next stick masking tape where jigsaw base sits and cut hole. I had already made a 400 x 400 frame out of 25 x 50 mm batten.This was then glued to the inside of the roof opening. Outside the corigations in the roof need to be packed out so that the heki sits flush. For this I used some D section pvc, which I had in the garage. This was the same thickness as the depth of the roof corigations. These we glued in to place with sika 512.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

First Window.

First of all the upright support has to be removed as it's bang in the middle of where the windows I tried marking out the opening on the inside of the panel , but there aren't any straight lines! So I went outside and measured the centre of the panel. Then drilled a hole through.the hole was almost in the same place as the inside Mark.Well within a couple of mm!.Next I used a piece of 3mm ply and made a 900x 500 template.Drilled a hole in the centre and screwed the template to the side of the van.After lining it up, drew round it with a marker pen.then used lots of masking tape around the opening so that when cutting the jigsaw doesn't scratch the paint.after measuring another 2 times I cut out the hole.Next job was to make a frame from 2x1 batten. This was glued (with sikaflex 512),to the inside of the opening.Once set the two halves of the window can be offered up an screwed together.One down and four to go!

Starting out.

This is the inside after stripping out the ply lining. I can't believe how many cavities there are! Lots of insulating to do.Fist job was to fit a sliding Seitz window in the panel behind the drivers door.The window is a 900 x 500.

Thursday, 10 November 2011


This is the new van, parked at Charmouth beach on the way home from Cornwall.This blog will be documenting it's conversion into a bespoke travel van and our camping adventures.
After owning a VW t4 for five years my partner Vonnie and myself decided that we needed something bigger. We prefer wild camping, so Need a self contained van.
A shower room and hot& cold running water + double glazed windows.Also good insulation as we like to camp all year round.

The van we have chosen to convert is a L3 H2 Citroen relay.This size gives enough room for a fixed bed at the rear, bathroom and galley in the middle and a front travel seat/dining area.
There's lots to think about and many parts to buy.I'm really looking forward to getting started.